FCC Auction: Bidding Tops $4.7 Billion! We Have A Winner!

The New York Times is reporting that the auction for the C-block of wireless spectrum (Read: the Google part) has may have been won by someone… but we don’t know who. Oh, the suspense!

All we know is that someone bid $4,713,823,000 and won. may have won.

Says the New York Times:

One thing is certain: because the C Block hit the $4.6 billion reserve price set by the Federal Communications Commission, certain rules will apply that will require the winning company to open its network to devices from competing companies.


UPDATE: The NYT says it was wrong about there being a winner. Other companies can technically still bid, yadda, yadda. Oh well, we’re still happy about the reserve price being met. We’re all winners. The Times says:

This post was wrong in saying that rules prohibit anyone from bidding higher than $4.7 billion for the C block. There are some rather complex ways that another company could in fact raise the bid in coming days. I’ll write a post explaining this later.

Spectrum Auction: The C-Block Bidding Is Over at $4.7 Billion


Edit Your Comment

  1. azntg says:

    I know I know I know! Is it… Microsoft? :-P

  2. Celticlady says:

    ok, it was me……I’m waiting for Bill Gates call!!

  3. jaydez says:

    I’ll put $10 on Google winning it.

  4. m4ximusprim3 says:

    I had my max at 5 billion! I got sniped!

  5. MFfan310 says:

    Here’s to hoping that it’s Google and not “Your Phone Is Tapped/We Want To Filter Bandwidth” AT&T or “Pay Through The Nose For Not-So-Unlimited Bandwidth” Verizon.

  6. Alexander says:

    What are the chances it’s Apple? That would certainly be a surprise…

  7. savvy999 says:

    I wouldn’t put it past a large investment groups /banks (Bridgewater, JPMorgan, etc) to put their money in something like this. It’s a no-lose for anyone who buys it, and so it’s not just media companies who would be interested.

  8. bgoldberg says:

    0 chance.

  9. hubris says:

    @alexander: They’ve certainly got enough iPod/iPhone money lying around.

  10. themediatrix says:

    Why do people want google to win? I think it’s creepy they already track us online, and connect our gmail to our browsing, docs, and other applications. Can anyone explain the benefit of it being google?

  11. chalpin says:

    If you like numbers, there’s always the direct source: [auctionbidding.fcc.gov]

    Select Auction #73 in the “Public” section. Click around – there’s a lot of info!

  12. backbroken says:

    I hope Google won.

    At least we can all rest easier knowing that the FCC has $$$ to continue the all important fight against boobies on TV.

  13. backbroken says:

    @themediatrix: Because Google makes cool stuff that works and frequently gives it away for free.

    Yes, they know a little bit too much about you. But it’s not like Verizon, AT&T, Microsoft, or anyone else for that matter would do any better by you with that information.

  14. MagicEightBall says:

    @themdiatrix: Because Google will most likely sell it on to someone else, in exchange for frequencies that are better suited for data. When they sell, they can add (further) stipulations to the use of the frequency. Hopefully these restrictions will keep the eventual owner from doing Bad Stuff to us.

  15. floydianslip6 says:

    @backbroken: No but those companies have a small slice. With google it’s aggregated, and searchable too!

  16. AbsoluteIrrelevance says:

    I’m not sure why AT&T should even be allowed to bid. They already control way too much stuff.

  17. WhaDa says:

    It’s shameful that it is being sold. We the people of the United States use to own the airwaves. Now we don’t. Tired of fees for everything? Selling our airwaves increases fees. Don’t want equipment locked into a single provider. This assures it. Nothing owned by a corporation will ever come without a hook to you the consumer. Think about it.

  18. B1663R says:

    Research in Motion. Blackberries for all!!

    think about it.

  19. ogman says:

    Hmmmm… open network? That eliminates Verizon and Microsoft, and one would hope it eliminates AT&T.

  20. ogman says:

    @themediatrix: So, you are not yet aware of how to keep Google from tracking your activities?

  21. ogman says:

    @WhaDa: Yeah, and the strange thing is that most people think that more private ownership is good because it reduces taxes. However, we still pay and often we pay more to a private corporation. Of course, I suppose that you could say that stock ownership maintains a bit of ownership, but it does not offer the same potential influence.

  22. edrift101 says:

    @chalpin: Unless I’m reading this wrong – it looks like the auction is still ongoing.

    Auction Description: 700 MHz Band
    Dates: Opened: 01/24/2008
    Rounds Completed: 20
    Bidding Days: 6
    Total PWB Amount: $14,991,264,300
    Licenses with PWBs: 1054
    Number of PWBs: 1047

  23. @edrift101: You’re right, you know. There’s still as many as six weeks of bidding to go. The only “news” is that the current high bid has reached the reserve price, so the title should read “We WILL have a winner!”

  24. Aston14 says:

    @edrift101: Indeed, it hasn’t been won yet, it just passed the threshold that says it will have to be opened by whoever wins it.

  25. atomicjo says:

    Please be Apple, please be Apple, please be Apple……..

  26. captainproton says:

    It appears to be between two companies. That would be Verizon and Google. I think Verizon is too self serving to bid on an open netowrk. I mean, that would mean that consumers wouldn’t be lockes in to crappy hardware, which, as we know is part of the mission statement of many companies. I suspect that this is Google, showing off their brassies. If this is the case, expect the markets to respond overwhelmingly positive, not because this is a good idea, but because many think that google has an uber crystal ball, and that they have optimism of some kind of economic recovery down the road. You read it here first.

  27. ZitosGhost says:

    Power to the people. Or to the small number of the same old large corporations who can afford an auction rather than a lottery.

  28. mthrndr says:

    @atomicjo: Apple? WTF?? more drm’d and locked down nonsense? fuck that.

  29. deadlizard says:

    Hope it’s Google so they start making their free, open gPhone. W00t!

  30. themediatrix says:

    @ogman: I’m somewhat aware (tor, right?) but unfortunately, lazy. Why should I have to do the work to keep them from tracking me? It should be the other way around – they should pay me to opt in.